Jim Guittard’s Place

Letter To Dallas Morning News

Posted in Life by guittard on February 28, 2009

America is rather silly right now. More and more news is negative about the crisis at hand. Where are the positive stories about good news. All we hear is bad and slanted toward going deeper and deeper down. Let’s write some positive stuff. It is funny that my having spent two years abroad as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Bulgaria isn’t worth mentioning. Many papers that I have contacted have turned down the story.

Seems that greed and money is the only thing that is important to write about these days. There are a lot of hardworking, sacrificing people out there that need notice. And I am writing to toot my own horn maybe. I taught in rough school in Pernik, Bulgaria for two years getting paid less than $400 a month. I returned to America just last November and like everybody else I am also looking for a job. I have seen how the world views America and it is not so positive. We need to do our part and get back to hard work in whatever it is.

I think America is obsessed with money and careers. You know what? It doesn’t matter so much the career that one takes if there is passion and purpose behind it. If you want to be a street sweeper then go for it. There is respect in working hard and not just collecting hand out and doing nothing.

Jim Guittard
Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Bulgaria
Dallas, Texas

Frogs In A Pot

Posted in Life by guittard on February 27, 2009

You know what? I think a lot of us are like frogs in a pot that are slowly being boiled alive. Why?

Because we get so used to the stuff around us that we don’t even know we are being cooked alive. You can put a frog in cold water in a pot and then put him on the stovetop and turn up the heat. The frog won’t jump out. The frog will get desensitized and wait patiently for death to come without even knowing it.

The bottom line is for us to wake the hell up! What are we here for? To do stupid stuff day after day after day after day? Get up from your mat and walk. Life is too short to compromise and waste away to nothing. Get up! Do something.

I don’t know who this is directed to but maybe myself. I’m sure a lot of people can relate.

The Guittard Brothers – 1980

Posted in Family by guittard on February 24, 2009

This is an oldie. Do you remember the Muppets drum set in the late 1970’s? Well, my dad caught my brother Bob, and I on film. It was probably 1979 or 1980 when the Baylor Bears went to the Cotton Bowl. So we were hyped up with the Bears. Notice my Baylor Football Jersey. My brother was probably two at the most and I was seven at the most. And listen to the song we are playing along with: the Aggie War hymn. Pretty funny.
My brother’s at: Flat People

Wake Up Now Americans!!!

Posted in Family, Life, Society by guittard on February 20, 2009

A lot of stuff is going on right now that is more than mind-boggling.  There are a lot of folks out there that have been negligent, ignorant, selfish and greedy.  This I believe is why all this bailout, stimulus package has come about.

Do you think that throwing money at these people will help?  No!  Because it is an internal problem of the mind.  It is bad habits and total disregard for doing the right thing.  Yeah, in the old days people worked hard to get somethere.  There are a lot of Americans still today that do work hard to get somewhere. 

My Great Great Grandfather immigrated from France in 1846 to Ohio.  He didn’t know English.  He learned it and struggled his way to become a country doctor in New Bedford, Ohio.  He struggled through hard winters and cared after people with pneumonia and other diseases of the day.  There were no cars and he went around by horseback making calls on patients and would be gone from home days at a time.  THIS IS AMERICA!

Many people have the “lottery” mentality wishing for everything under the sun to come there way without any lifting of fingers.  It is sickening.  I believe America will fight the good fight.  There is something higher at play, here.  Will we exist as a nation of hard workers or a nation of “lottery” lovers.  The time is now to wake up and not settle for the mediocre, “I can’t” mentality.  Get up, stand up, rise up!  For God, For Country, For Honor!

Whose in charge here?  We have forgotten what the country was made of.  Overseas we get trashed for how America is now.  They expect us to lead!  How can we lead if we can’t even see through the confusion and chaos?  I lived overseas for two and a half years and I was confronted on few occasions about American Politics.  Let’s put it aside and go back to our roots.  It’s burning within each of us.  And by the way, Mr. Attorney General, Americans are not cowards.  Shame on you!  They stand for what is right.

Dr. Francis Joseph Guittard

dr-francis-joseph-guittard

Hate Mail For “Busted In Bulgaria”

Posted in Bulgaria, Music by guittard on February 19, 2009

music_freakie wrote:
Thursday morning

total junk!

Guittard wrote:
Monday afternoon    

Music_Freakie, how can you say my music is “junk”? Did you listen to a complete song of mine? You are not listed as a listener. You DO have good taste in music. So if you really listened I’m sure you’d like it. Your loss, not mine. Jim

music_freakie wrote:
8 hours ago    

jim, john or whatever, i DO think you record junk!!!! i can’t remember your name sa well as the something you recorded. i have the right to express freely my opinion – TOTAL JUNK, NO SORRY TO SAY THAT! didn’t know you were so sensitive abt your JUNK / u probably have some mental problems so consult a shrink/ and noone cares if you’d go on recording more of that shit! what makes me angry is that u pretend to make some BULGARIAN musicand put ugly pics on the stupid cd covers which i find INSULTING ME PERSONALLY AS A HUMAN AND BULGARIAN. FUCK YOU, you are junk and you record junk, stupid sob!!!

music_freakie wrote:
7 hours ago

self-conceited highly complexed man, make an appointment with your shrink, they could help you.yeah, it is JUNK, SHIT, GROSS. it sucks.i express freely my opinion of likes and dislikes following the exemplary standards of american democracy:PP /puke/

Guittard wrote:
5 hours ago    

Cursing out complete strangers that has to be really admired. I will not quit! You can trash talk all you want. Yes, artists are sensitive and if you were honest you would say what you are really mad about. It isn’t my music. It is something else. Sorry you are in such a rage. I never pretend to be Bulgarian. It is a unique culture that I cannot do justice. I recorded the songs as something positive. I am glad about spending some time in Bulgaria.

music_freakie wrote:
5 hours ago     violating my rights to choose which is good and which not is not a virtue.you are not my mentor. sensitive, no i meant sissy, actually. don’t quit, it’s up to you, but don’t push me into your puke. i still think you do something which i can’t name music, do it as a hobby and be informed that noone knows you around.JUNK JUNK JUNK.get out of my page and never come back or i’ll kick your pseudomusic-a*s out off it. |  

Guittard wrote:
12 minutes ago    

I never said you had to like my music. I just thought that human respect and kindness was in order.

Hate mail helps I think.  Any press is good press.  Look at this:

bulgaria-tag-at-lastfm

Take a look at who’s number six at the lastfm player.

February 16, 2003

Posted in Life by guittard on February 16, 2009

So it has been six years since an eventful night in my life.  I can still remember quite well.  I was living in the Los Feliz area of Los Angeles at the time.  For three years, I was hitting the pavement in hopes of being a known musician.  But something knocked me down.

What knocked me down was a robbery.  It was in my Los Feliz apartment.  The place was ransacked and trashed and death threats were written all over the walls.  Why did it happen?    Because of shady contacts.  Yep!  Los Angeles has quite a bit.   The cops were called and the chips fell.

I was not in the apartment at the time of the robbery but had been there right before and left to go to a hotel in Pasadena because of a funny feeling.  I thought about taking my guitars but I didn’t and so three were stolen.  My apartment was broken into and a 12 String Guild acoustic, Electric Fender B-Bender and a Fender Jazz Bass were stolen. 

I was betrayed in a big way.  I now forgive the people that were responsible.  I never got the guitars back.  They may be around Los Angeles somewhere.  My Rickenbackers survived the robbery.  I guess they are a bit holy. 

It is good for you to be stripped of your possessions at times.  What is it anyway?  Property and meaningless.  I picked up my guitars again after recovering back in Texas from the whole ordeal.

 The door was busted open and it said something like “West Side Gangsters” written on the inside of the door.  Straight into the apartment ahead was my bedroom, the door was shut but hanging on the door was a note of some kind saying something like, “We know where you are and will kill you.”  My entrance was the second door on the lower level as the picture will show. 

Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California

los-feliz-los-angeles-california

 I remember rightfully being paranoid while inside and found a suspicious looking thing that I didn’t know what it was.  It almost looked like a handmade bomb.  I called the police out again and this was in 2003 you know and the cops came out with their dogs to see what it was.  It was nothing.  They taped off the whole street and I sat on a wall down the street and played like I knew nothing.  It was embarrassing.  Old ladies were being escorted across the street and I just said, “must be a terrorism scare or something” when people would ask what was going on.

So for a week, I stayed at the Westway Inn across from the Pasadena City College.  It was a new low and I wondered what to do next.  I had actually put a down payment down on a new apartment that was cheaper and in Van Nuys, California.  When I got on the phone with mom, she said it was time to come home.  I got a U-Haul and got out of there.   I maxed out my Discover Card and lost the deposit on the both apartments.  I hadn’t even moved into the second one.  Let’s just say I was depressed as everything.  

Back in Texas, I didn’t pursue charges.  It wasn’t worth it.  I had been through enough and so had the person I was trying to help.  God knows what happened and I let it go.  I think I made the right decision. 

The Pasadena Westway Inn

westway-inn-pasadena-california

 I wrote a song around this time about the thing I was dealing with.  It’s called “Confusion, Lies, Guns, and Drugs.”  The song is country-rock and I was listening to a lot of Johnny Cash at the time so it came out this way. 

 Confusion, Lies, Guns, and Drugs

The lyrics are:

Confusion, Lies, Guns and Drugs

I woke up this morning half past two.
My only problem is where are you.
You ran off with another guy.
I don’t know why.

Confusion, Lies, Guns and Drugs. 2X

We’ve been through this many a time.
It’s starting to be a crime.
Give up the jerk with the gun.
Let’s have some fun.

Confusion, Lies, Guns, and Drugs 2X

I just don’t know what you see in him.
It seems like it’s just a whim.
He doesn’t like you for who you are.
It’s just a game.

Confusion, Lies, Guns, and Drugs 2X

Ya gotta clear your mind, choose the Way.
It’ll be a brand new day.
Give up the junk and soon you’ll see.
I promise you.

No more confusion, lies, guns and drugs. 2X

Feel free to download my “California Daze” album for free that I did in 2002 here:
California Daze

A-Rod? I don’t care

Posted in Life by guittard on February 14, 2009

I don’t place much faith in sports stars. Alex Rodriguez is no star. The real heroes don’t get credit. It’s these clowns who happen to make the news.
Who cares about A-Rod? He is such a hero for taking $275 million from the New York Yankees. Hey, President Barack Obama, maybe you could take some of his money for the bailouts.

Jim Guittard, Dallas

Have You Been Scammed?

Posted in Life by guittard on February 12, 2009

Have you been scammed?
I sure have.
Have you been damned?
I sure have.
Have you been Uncle Sammed?
I sure have.
It’s no fun.

Have you been robbed?
I sure have.
Have you been kidnapped?
I sure have.
Have you been analysed?
I sure have.
It’s no fun.

Have you been chastized?
I sure have.
Have you been advised?
I sure have.
Have you been mockerized?
I sure have.
It’s no fun.

Have you been cashed out?
I sure have.
Have you been talked out?
I sure have.
Have you been drinked out?
I sure have.
It’s no fun.

Have you been on your own?
I sure have.
Have you been kicked out?
I sure have.
Have you been sent home?
I sure have.
It’s no fun.

Have you been in the middle?
I sure have.
Have you been taken to the cleaners?
I sure have.
Have you been called a fool.
I sure have.
It’s no fun.

The Replacements – Unsatisfied

Learning to Live with Pain

Posted in Life by guittard on February 11, 2009

This article may poke fun at things but really it is written with best of intentions and I’m no therapist.  Think for yourself. 

I’ll start with America. Yeah, we’re having a helluva a time right now.  That’s what the news says at least.  This is a place where people live with the least amount of pain compared to the rest of the world. You say prove it! Okay, well, here it is.

There came a shift, I believe, in the early 1990s. Prior to the 1990s, people were living more constructively with their pain. Now, they do not live with it; they put it aside for the quick fix. You have all seen the drug commercials that hit television in the 1990s?

Prior to the mid 1990s, when people had shyness, or anxiety they confronted their fears head-on and worked through the “pain.” During my college days, I signed up for acting and speech courses. I also joined a Toastmasters group and took a pricey Dale Carnegie course. I was doing the deal.

Now alot of the public resorts to taking pills, first. I was sucked into the whole pill popping scene of the late 1990’s. It was after seeing a Paxil commercial. I went to my psychiatrist and requested Paxil and he prescribed it. It was so easy. I saw a commercial and in a few days I had pills. Now think about this phenomenon. Just look on Youtube and you will see testimonials about this.

The basic video is: I saw the drug commercial and went to see the psychiatrist or M.D. but they were too busy and so I talked to a nurse and told her my symptoms and then I got a prescription.

The follow up video goes something like: Now I am having side effects and cannot sleep or I am gaining weight. The doc is changing me to another medicine. I’ll see how it goes but maybe I should get off pills.

The third video goes something like: The new pills are not working either. I keep telling the doctor that I can do it on my own but the doctor insists I give it a try.

Then the video maker usually falls off the face of the earth. What happens next?

The next video comes out something like this: I am so mad at these doctors. They know nothing. I am better off just living with the anxiety than these side effects.

Through it all, I have held onto my guitar more than the pills. I’m no doctor or therapist.  Do your own research. The doctors know best about certain mental conditions that require medicine.

In my experience, it was more trouble and money than it was worth it. I should have learned to just live with the pain instead of buying into a quick fix.  I’m an artist by the way, and this is what drives me. 

So here it is, keep pressing on, don’t give up, don’t complain, just get on with it.

You’ve Arrived To Nowhere When…

Posted in Life by guittard on February 6, 2009

1. You love to watch the birds feeding in the back yard for hours.
2. You get furious when you see the squirrels running around in the back.
3. Your only friend is your stockbroker.
4. You cuss at the drive thru bank teller b/c you’re in a hurry to get home and watch the birds.
5. You can’t stand to give up your country club membership b/c of what others might think.
6. You believe Dr. Phil is God.
7. Your only dinner conversation is, “Can you pass the salt?”
8. You believe your health insurance will cover everything.
9. You believe a pill will solve your problems.
10. You believe that no one cares.

You have arrived when…

1. You believe in yourself.
2. You fight the “good fight.”
3. You forgive others.
4. You do what it takes.
5. You remain strong and flexible.
6. You listen to your voice.
7. You don’t blame others.
8. You place higher importance in people.
9. You turn the noise off.
10. You begin to love others.